Access to Social Sciences SCQF Level 4

What is special about this course?

Access to Social Sciences is an intensive short course which aims to develop your skills to prepare you for further study. On completion of this course, you can apply for the Social Sciences NC Level 5 which starts straight after the access course, meaning you can gain both the Level 4 and 5 qualifications in one academic year.

Studying Social Sciences makes you think critically about the world around you. The combination of subjects such as Modern Studies, Politics, Philosophy, History and Morality challenge the way you view society and enable you to view alternative futures as well as preparing you for entry into a wide range of courses and careers.

Entry requirements

There are no formal entry requirements for this course.

In this short full time course you will be introduced to a range of social science subjects alongside a range of core skills which will develop your personal and study skills and prepare you for progression to the Level 5 NC Social Sciences course.

Social Sciences topics:

  • Modern Studies: Democracy in Scotland and the United Kingdom
  • Modern Studies: Social Issues in the United Kingdom
  • Historical Study: Scottish
  • People and Society: Investigating Skills
  • Morality and Belief

Personal development and study skills topics:

  • Communication
  • Digital Skills
  • Internet Safety
  • Working with Others
  • Problem Solving
  • Numeracy
  • Employability Award

How will I study my course?

  • Full Time

Your course will generally be a mix of scheduled local centre-based learning time, and self-study time. You need to commit to both, but you can choose when to complete your self-study time to fit around work, caring and personal commitments. 

You will attend your local centre to learn together with your lecturers and fellow classmates in an online classroom. As well as having fellow students with you in your local centre, you may also connect with students in our other locations.

Our courses include a combination of video conferencing (like a Zoom call), interactive chat and sharing of presentation slides and other visuals. Online-classrooms provide you with real time interaction, contact and discussion with your lecturer and fellow students, so it’s a much richer experience than purely online learning.

In 2023-24, we fully expect the scheduled learning aspect of all our courses to be taught in our learning centres.

How long will my course last?

1 semester 

End of August to the end of January 

Where can I study my course?

    • UHI Argyll

Start date

Late August


For the latest information on fees please see our fees policy.

What can I do on completion of my course?

When you’ve successfully completed this course, you can move on to study at a higher level with courses such as: 

  • NC Social Sciences Level 5, and subsequently
  • NC Social Sciences Level 6 
  • HNC Social Sciences 
  • BA Hons Social Sciences 

Social Sciences prepares you for a wide range of careers including politics, journalism, law, teaching, social work, Police Scotland and many more.

Is there more information available online?

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You can use the above QR code to connect directly to the course details.

Curriculum Lead for Social Sciences Amber Crowley says:

‘It can be daunting returning to study, or coming to college having left school without all the qualifications you need to enter the career you want. This access course is designed to introduce you to a wide range of Social Science topics while gently supporting you to improve your study skills. There aren’t any entry requirements so this course is a great place to start if you aren’t sure which direction you want to go, or are looking to generally improve your study skills and qualification level.’

Apply for Access to Social Sciences SCQF Level 4

I want to start in 2023/24

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at UHI Argyll. UHI Argyll operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of age, disability, gender identity, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity status, race, religion and/or belief, sex, sexual orientation or socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.